Monthly Archive November 2017

6 PAX Pre-running, 4 PAX Working-out, and 1 Cobbler on the Crapper

As my title alludes, we had a mix of participants in this morning’s addition of the The Arsenal.  We had a strong showing for the hilly pre-run: 6 PAX.  Sauerkraut and Sherlock left us after the pre-run and Cobbler joined us for the main event at 0530.  However, after the mosey over to the high school parking lot, he had to depart for what we thought would be a momentary visit to the QT restroom.  He returned about 25 minutes later stating that he wasn’t feeling well.  Apparently when someone who generally is heavy on the workout deuces count says “someone should not have to crap that much”, it’s pretty serious.  Hope you feel better Cobbler!  Here’s the workout.

Warm up mosey over to the High School parking lot.

High School Parking Lot – exercise then run to the end of the parking lot

30 Merkins

15 Mountain Climbers each leg

20 Lunges each leg

30 Diamond Merkins

15 Burpees

30 Squats

10 – 4×4’s – burpee with 4 merkins and 4 mountain climber each leg while in the plank portion of the burpee

10 – Broad Jumps

Mosey to the practice field


Up the hill and 10 derkins at the top

Back down the hill and 10 burpees at the bottom

repeated 3 times and then decrease reps to 8 and then 6 for the final 2 rounds

Mosey to the Playground

Aiken Legs – Done in succession with no rest — 20 Squats, 20 Box Jumps, 20 Lunges (10 each leg), 20 Split Jacks (10 each leg forward)

10 Pull-ups

15 Dips

1 Lap

Repeat once

Mosey back to COT with a little mary before.

Thanks to all the PAX who were there to work hard this morning.  I hope I successful in my claim for a challenging routine this morning.

Has Anyone Seen the Q

14 PAX showed up for Devils Turn this morning, and even the Q (Gumbo) was there… nearly on time.

Many of us have faced the dreaded realization that the Q is either running late or fart sacked it this morning.  Have no fear, at least YHC emailed out the route the day before.  So with the route in hand and an ample spattering of leadership in the ranks, the PAX headed out on time for a run to Raintree, through the neighborhood.

So where was their fearless leader?  Well, he was marking off the route, since an increase in lost-in-space individuals has been known to grow when venturing into new roads — Some have even been known to wonder despite what I am sure was impeccable route marking with the Qs child’s sidewalk chalk.  But tardiness is no excuse on my part.  YHC met up with the PAX at the start as they crossed Rea, on their way into the darkness.

After some running instructions captured by “Does everyone know where we are going today?” we continued on to the prescribed route, despite audible responses and expected jeering of the Q.

Today’s route:  West on Bevington, Right on Coburn, left on Brownes Pond, right on Rosecliff, left on Strawberry towards South Charlotte Middle, right on Woodfox, left on Rounding Run, and right on Raintree as far as you like before needing to run back.

Overall, most appreciated the different route today and some even noticed the chalked arrows for directions.

Frasier, Turkey Leg, and Fletch headed out at their expected (faster than crazy pace).  Fletch not wanting to break with good weekly theme, apparently “rested” for some minutes on the way, and still ended up passing everyone in the front a second time.

Bunker and Enron headed off chatting along the way as YHC quickly realized that not running for some time tends to take its toll on general fitness.  On Raintree, Van Pelt and YHC decided on an early return.  Margo, Rebar, Meatloaf Wild Turkey, Cheddar, and Baracus continued on (perhaps with others).

While the PAX assembled for COT, your Q was beaming at the realization that the effort to mark off the route had paid off.  Or did it?  After some name-a-roma Wild Turkey and Rebar were still MIA.  Rebar had decided to do some additional exploration down an unmarked road, quickly realizing his error and correcting it however.  Wild Turkey, feeling his miles were still a little low and needing some extra credit, also endeavored on his own journey and won the crown for most adventurous today.

Overall it was a great turnout this week at Devils Turn and it was great to return from an extended work departure.

Each of the PAX laid down some great effort.

It was an honor to lead you guys today.


Frog in a Well or Paula Abdul?


Yes: I care about your well-being but not enough to sue me


37° and brisk – gloves and hats were present


Run in a rectangle and then form a circle for the following exercises:

  1. SSH (Kirby does what appears to be a modified windmill)
  2. Windmills (Kirby now does a few SSH and then back to a modified windmill)
  3. Low Slow Squats
  4. Merkins

… and we were off to the MurderHorn


Part #1:  7 (maybe 8) street lights exist down the hill towards the playground area.   We did a Paula Abdul run with 10 Tagalong Burpees (10 jump squats, then 10 HR Merkins to save on the back pain) at each light moving forward and 10 Carolina Dry Docks on the reverse.

#FakeNews  I stole the Paula Abdul style workout from ThinMint (who probably stole it from someone else – he blamed HeartBreaker) but have now realized the lyrics of the song are I TAKE 2 STEPS FORWARD and 2 STEPS BACK – this leads to no progress.

Google tells me:  “Two steps forward one step back…” is a catchphrase reflecting on an anecdote about a frog trying to climb out of a water well; for every two steps the frog climbs, it falls back by one step, making its progress arduous.                the workout was very arduous (had to google this one too)

Part #2:  2 sets with a partner for the following: 10 assisted pull-ups / 10 handslap merkins / 20 dips / 20 derkins


Waiting for the six – Abs with the pet Dr.

Part #3

Back down mudderhorn, 10 jump squats and 10 HR Merkins (modify to 10 Dry Docks if needed) stopping at every light to the top

Final exercises:  10 yard forward bear crawl to a 25 yard sprint, into a 25 yard backward run, ending the loop with a 10 yard backward bear crawl – rinse and repeat x3 sets.   10 modified burpees OYO to kill the last minute.

However many steps Forward or Backward it is we ended up with the following stats for the workout:

170 Squats / 210 Merkins & Derkins / 50 Dry Docks / 20 Pull-Ups (assisted) / 40 Dips & 2.4 Miles

#CountORama / #NameORama 

21 PAX, including 4 Respects & 0 FNGs


  1. SOB Christmas Party:  reach out to ThinMint or read this:
  2. Joe Davis Run for Recovery (January 6th):
  3. STRAWBERRY on Q at Rebel Yell next week!

– Tagalong 

It’s beginning to look at lot like Christmas

Actually, no it’s not.  We tried to get into the Christmas spirit this morning a little bit but truth is we’re still trying to pay off Thanksgiving.  Ate and drank way too much last week.  Add to that a couple illnesses and this is the first time I’ve posted in almost a month.  Woof.

6 veteran pax showed up at OPE this morning to shake off the Thanksgiving rust and put a down payment on Christmas binging to come.

Pax were properly disclaimed (not really) and then we headed for the parking lot on the far side of the school.  Instructions were given to drop and do 5 burpees each time we saw a Christmas inflatable or Christmas lights.

  • 20 SSH IC
  • 15 Gummy Ten Counts IC
  • 10 LSS IC

Mosey to the church and find a partner and a lifting rock.  Partner 1 does called lifting exercise while Partner 2 runs to Goodwill bin and back.  But wait, the Goodwill bin is gone just in time for Christmas.  Bah Humbug.

  • Bicep Curls
  • Overhead Presses
  • Tricep Extensions
  • Squats

Enough of that.  YHC gave instructions for our trip to the Foxworth Halfpipe so as not to wake up the neighbors.  At the halfpipe, grab your same partner and do 5 hand slap merkins in the middle of the halfpipe, then part ways.  One partner goes to top of one side and does 10 Heels to Heaven.  Other partner goes to other side to do 20 LBCs.  We did two rounds of this.  That hill on the closest to our normal Foxworth hill is terrible.

Mosey back to OPE through the woods.  It was dark.  Almost lost a couple pax… probably due to my poor eyesight in the dark.  Should’ve let them follow Jet Fuels highlighter yellow gloves.

Stop at the concession stand for 20 steps ups (10 each leg), 20 derkins and 20 dips.

Time is almost up so head back to the launch.

  • 20 Dolly
  • 20 Freddy Mercury
  • 10 Rosalita


Great job by all pax today.  I warned that we would do some running to shed some Thanksgiving calories.  I think we accomplished that.  Jet Fuel was out front most of the day on the running part.  Everyone else was close behind.  Good to have MAD out there with us and to have Puddin Pop back to his pre-injury form.  Jet Fuel, Sleepy and Queen all crushed it like they do every week at Hydra.  Great job.  We ended up with 25 burpees I think.  Not too bad.  Obviously folks are slow to get their decorations up this early.  Just like me… it’s taken me and my wife 4 days to put 4 strands of Christmas lights on our tree.


What is a moderate?

~Post on behalf of Highchair

The Pax called for a moderate so I did my best to deliver. It went something like this:

Warm Up;

Slow mosey to the other side of the school where we circled up and did the following:

25 SSH

10 Wind Mills

10 Circle Merkins

20 Low Slow Squats

15 Imperial Walkers

20 Mountain Climbers

To get the heart pumping YHC instructed the PAX to line up on the first bus parking line for parking lot suicides.

At the first line, one burpee, run to 2nd line, 2 burpees, run back to start then back to 3rd line 3 burpees, rinse and repeat until the Q had to audible which resulted in cheers from the PAX. We did however make it to line 10 (out of 12) which meant we did 55 burpees. Good Job!! That was not moderate, my bad…

The Main Thang:

PAX lined up on white line again, laying on their stomachs and since this was such a success this past Saturday I thought I would duplicate. Each member would take turns calling out an exercise to the count of 20. First on stomach, then roll over to your back for another called exercise. This kept going until all 9 PAX called an exercise 2X. The result was a variety of Merkins and Mary. Very effective.

Mosey back to the other side of the school where we bear crawled half the distance of the parking lot, then in reverse, crawl bear half way back.

Still time for some Mary so we did some Homer to Marge and WW2’s.


It was an honor leading this fine group of F3 Brothers. And for the Mint Hill PAX, it only took me 10 minutes to get to Stallings Elementary.



Thankful for Power Steering

23 PAX posted (1 went MIA as we ended) to begin the joy of the Christmas season with a stroll through the 12 Days of Christmas.  I thought it went quite well?  I am quite proud of Alf’s parting comment that this holiday season he is thankful for the blessing of Power Steering.  Teared up a little bit when I heard that.  (The weinke was a bit heavy in upper body).  Here we go…..


The Thang:

The Disclaimer was issued and we took a slow mosey to the parking lot to circle up for COP lite.



  • IW x 20 IC
  • Slow count merkins. 10 IC

That’s all – we’ll be warm soon.


We mosey past the rock pile and pickup a good size lifting rock – – and continue on to the parking lot.


All lined up and we begin the following, done in 12 Days of Christmas order (as we progress through the days you do the exercise for that day and then all the previous days):


1st Day:  50 backward run, 10 merkin, 10 LBC, 50 forward run

2nd Day:  Squat jack x 2

3rd Day: Ski abs x 3 (military count)

4th Day: Manmaker merkins – 4 each side  [these would prove to be quite troubling by the end]

5th Day:  8ct Burpees x 5

6th Day:  Louganis with Rock x 6

7th Day:  Squat with Rock x 7

8th Day:  Tricep press with Rock x 8

9th Day:  Shoulder Press with Rock x 9

10th Day:  Curls with Rock x 10

11th Day:  Groiners x 11

12th Day:  Off-set Merkins x 12 (6 on each arm)

Then one final round as a refrain.  (I might have heard some mumble chatter when this was called).

I believe we ended up just short of the Merkin Ladder total for merkins


We return the rocks and circle up for a few rounds of Mary.

Then mosey back to the launch point.

So simple.

So beautiful.

So moving.



It all seemed reasonable at the time of authoring, but YHC found a few of the sequential arm exercises to be somewhat challenging.  A little hard to type.  Alas, all part of the Christmas season.  Good work by all.  And to all a good night! (that’s from the Santa Claus book)



Where’s the music?

Nine PAX, including a visitor from The Promised Land (or at least the land where YHC spent 4.5 quality years getting edumacated), gathered in the cozy confines of the Scout Hut for another round of Gumby, the only F3 workout where you actually feel better when it’s over.

  • Mood: Regular lighting. No Bambi Lamp today.
  • Music: Avett Brothers Radio on Pandora (more on that later)
  • Devo: No specific devotional, just a call to action based on Ephesians 4 that as we are in a holiday season, remember that we are called to be a single, united body in Christ. If there is any sort of discord in your own life, seek reconciliation, after all, Christ died for ALL of EVERYONE’s sins.


Start in corpse for devo.

Stretch out,  arms above head.

Bridge x4

Windshield wipers, L and R, last set holding in one direction while looking in the other (and requisite flapjacking).

Grab a strap or rope — wrap around left leg, 90 degrees straight up, then out to the left. Repeato, then flapjack.

Sit up, bring your feet in for butterfly. Give it a few flaps, then press knees to the floor (or as close as you can go).

Move to tabletop — cycle through cat and cow.

Then do the Odell Beckham — right leg out, as if to decorate a fire hydrant. Make circles with your knee. Flapjack.

Kick out into plank, run through a sun salutation 3 times. Meet in mountain, then do a half-salutation, meeting in down dog.

In down dog, right leg straight out in 3-legged dog. Then bring the knee in for cheetah. Go through that cycle three times, finish sun salutation.

Then, another half-salutation, going through the same series with the left leg.

1 full SS OYO. Meet in mountain.

Face the wall, star pose, slowly descend to mat. Walk your hands back, then to the right, then to the left. Arise!

1 full SS OYO. Meet in mountain.

Face the other wall. Star post, slowly descend to mat. Bend left leg, sit back on that leg, right leg straight out, foot flexed for the ninja post. Flapjack. Repeato. Arise!

1 half-salutation, meet in down dog.

Swing right leg through, come up into Warrior 1. Move to Warrior 2, then Peaceful Warrior, then back to 2 and 1. Repeato. Step into mountain.

Half-salutation into down dog, do the same warrior series on the other side.

Meet in mountain, let’s do some tree!

After some heavy wobbling on both sides in tree, half-salutation, meet in down dog, right leg back and through for pigeon. Elbows down to lean in to the stretch, then come back up. If you are a freak of nature, try and bring your arms up in almost a crescent lunge with pigeon.

Unwind, then flapjack.

Back down on the mat, hug your knees, roll around.

Resume corpse pose.



Moderate running/boot camp workout launching from Socrates Academy (look it up, it’s under “So Crates”) Thursdays at 5:15 am. Get in touch with Madison for more details.

Paper Jam on Q next week. Always a good leader and crowd pleaser.


First off, welcome to Cesspool, a visiting PAX from “Famously Hot” Columbia, S.C. We were glad to have you. Also, based on his reaction, I like to think that this whole active recovery workout was a revelation. Gumby is taking over.

As usual, the music is central to the tale of a particular Gumby. Given that I forgot my speaker, which usually draws rave reviews from sound engineers Tweetsie and Swiss Miss, I had to run it off my phone. I also could not quite get the volume at a satisfactory level. I told our beloved Site Qs/sound engineers that they should put a community speaker in the budget for next year. I still like the ABR station on Pandora as a shakeup from the usual ethereal offerings centered around yoga. My personal favorite was a bluegrassy cover of “Heaven” by Canada’s favorite son, Bryan Adams.

Also, I just noticed for the first time this morning the bear cutout hiding in the rafters of our beloved scout hut. Kinda cool.

As always, thanks to Swiss and Tweetsie for the opportunity to lead (and for putting up with my smart aleck commentary in BBs). Gumby continues to be a key part of my own personal fitness routine, and it is always an easy choice hanging with a great group of guys.

Sound off in the comments for anything I missed (or when we might expect that community speaker).

Roaming Charges

22 men roamed around #F3TheMaul after being charged with utilizing the surrounding landscape as much as possible.


Short disclaimer and off w/ no COP.

Run switchbacks on hill to the left of the road on the way to Firebirds.

10 Bulgarian split squats (each leg) on wall between Firebirds and Cantina.

Worm walk with hands and feet on lip of adjacent walls in main fountain area.

10 dips and 10 jump ups at main fountain wall.

2 rounds of people’s chair w/ overhead press and 20 donkey kicks on 1st level of Uwharrie parking deck.

Rapid rock set somewhere behind parking deck.  10 curls, 10 overhead press and 10 tricep extensions.

Mary at Mary (the statue at St. Matt’s) while waiting for the six.

Animal walk of choice around sidewalk encircling statue of Mary.

Mosey to Robinson Farm.  Mary while waiting for the six.

3 rounds of 10 Carolina dry docks on the top breezeway and 20 flutters (each leg) on ground level, w/ bunny hops up the stairs.

Muscle-up repeats on retaining wall on Elm next to St. Matt’s while waiting for six.

Down the hill to delivery road behind Target/Michaels/HT.  10 jump squats at every speed bump.  Plank for the six.

2 ~100m sprints in groups of 3 PAX in front of movie theater.


The goal for this workout was to use the landscape as much as possible during a 2 mile loop from Stonecrest down to Robinson Farm and back.  Along the way we utilized hills, walls, a parking deck, rocks, sidewalks, stairs and a retaining wall.  These are features that make for a great AO.  We had a big group today which was AWESOME.  With that comes the challenge of keeping the PAX together, which is all the more difficult when trying to cover a decent amount of ground while avoiding down time.  Hopefully YHC did a reasonably good job at that today.

It was great to have Fire Hazard back in the mix after his vacation last week.  It’s always strange when he’s not at a workout, since he usually attends all of them, somehow.  YHC imagines that after reading this Bunker will think to himself “If FH attends so many workouts how is he still fat?”.  Bunker, that is hurtful.  Shame on you for hypothetically thinking that in this BackBlast.  It’s a good thing no one reads these.

In Contrast, YHC would like to add that Escobar, Fredo and Goonie are looking very slim these days.  And Wingy is well on his way due to being on day three of a juice cleanse.  Side note: you may want to avoid running directly behind Wingman for the next few days, as it could be slippery.  Q’s please add to your disclaimers.

Doc McStuffins crushed today, as he does.  As he pulled away in his massive pickup we speculated about how many injured kittens and/or sick farm animals he could fit in the bed.  The answer?  Zero.  Because he cured them all.

Thank you Squid for taking us out.

Thank you Commish and Tool Bag for the opportunity to lead.


HDHH TONIGHT @ 5PM at Kit’s Trackside Crafts in Pineville to celebrate Dumpster Fire’s town council win.  Bring your complaints.

Escobar is collecting non-bulky toys to send back to the Mother Land (Colombia) for the less fortunate.  Think of it is a reverse smuggling operation for a good cause.  He will be at da Vinci this Saturday.

Sign up for the SOB Holiday Party.

Sign up for the 2018 Joe Davis Run for Recovery.

9 Strong&Fast

9 Strong&Fast showed up for the midweek edition of Area 51’s best and toughest workout on Hwy 51.  Here’s what they did:

Quick lap around the parking lot, circle up


Copperhead SquatsX20

Monkey HumpersX20

Mountain  ClimbersX20

Head down to the track for partner BLIMPS

One partner runs, the other does a called exercise



I-mperial walkers


P-lank jacks


Switch to lunges going down the track while your partner runs, flapjack

Switch to reverse lunges while your partner runs, jog it in together

Pit stop area at the end of track which included: LBC’s, dollies, flutter kicks, the Protractor

Up to the parking lot for 5 burpees….that’s it!


Huggy Bear has gotten a lot faster since the last time I saw him.  We were running together, pushing the pace, then Purell blows past us like we’re standing still.  Of course, he and his partner Cheese Curd (who is also fast) almost lapped the entire PAX.  Whim was quite taken with the shooting star, another reminder of the amazing world created for us.


Celebration party for Dumpster Fire at a (the) bar in Pineville.  See twitter for details.

Answers will be given to questions such as:

*Who will carry Councilman Fire’s football? My nomination is Spackler.

*Who’s good enough with photoshop to add DF’s 2.0 under his Resolute Desk?

and most importantly…

*Will Pineville be the recipient of several large federal grants for more Pull-up Bars?

I think there’s a Christmas party somewhere, sometime but no one mentioned it.

Mixer Upper – extended cut

There were several PAX afraid Monday night like with thoughts of “worst. intervals. ever.” and “I can already feel the soreness” and “that looks awful”. Only one apparent sadist, “I look forward to this suffering”.  But, all that had been promised was some return of Mix Mash / Mixer Upper / variable intervals and perhaps some overtime, but hopefully what was gained was confidence and fitness.


Preblast – Mixer Upper #2

  • Modifications:
    • Only one PAX got in 6 200s – Mario.  At least two PAX got in 5 – Frasier and Citgo. Most PAX got in at least 3.
    • Several PAX pushed the pace back to Threshold on the way home, but some were perhaps smarter and made it into a true cooldown.

The Moleskin:

  • Small crew at 5:10 with most there huddling in their cars.  Then the pre-run PAX (Woodson, Tuck, Wild Turkey, Mario, and Atlas … and probably Depth Charge, but he’s computer illiterate so NOT on Strava or any Social Media apparently) showed up, more cars pulled up, and a sufficient crowd of 21 or so headed out at 5:15.  There was one PAX running behind and pulling into the lot at the last minute, and one can only guess that it was Das Boot (because Voodoo and Strange Brew weren’t there – apparently electric cars take a while to warm-up sometimes).
  • Actually ran ahead schedule this week for the warm-up, so we ran through the toes, heels, high knees, and butt kicks rather quickly on a new route through the Met Life courtyard. Ending up at the corner of North Community House and Ballantyne Commons we were ready to go right at 0525.
  • 6 minute intervals at Threshold Pace were noted they should be “comfortably hard” (though Cheddar apparently thought it was his Morning uncomfortable run).  Pace target is about 1 minute per mile slower than your current mile Personal Best.  These can also be measured for distance at 1mile / 1600m and have a normal rest of 1 minute in between.  However, group modifications led towards 6 minutes, and this planned workout that is in a Final Phase of a 5K/10K plan called for an extended 2 minute recovery jog.  If you are ever interested in 5K, Half Marathons, or Marathon workout plans, there are several available that I have compiled into a Google Docs spreadsheet.  More than happy to share.
  • The 200m Intervals at Mile Race pace were designed to get the legs feeling a faster turnover again, albeit while a little tired.  Great for that last push feeling at the Joe Davis Run when you’re going to be flying through the park trail on the way to the finish line.
  • And the closing ~1 mile home was recommended to do again at Threshold Pace, and it appears that some PAX like Bunker, Frasier, and perhaps Mario took the challenge.
  • Welcome back to Harry Caray (a Haggis recruit from the Fort) on his 2nd time at Swift.  Kotters to Rock Thrill.
  • 17 PAX on the Strava Fly-by today: (checking…yep, it was Das Boot that was late…you can’t hide!)
  • And why do we need to put Comments in the Backblast (that few read) that are already in Slack (that most read) or on Strava (that ALL should read), who knows?
    • Bunker, “I. am. exhausted” (He paid Enron or to ghost write apparently).
    • Wild Turkey (flashback to last Thursday afternoon apparently), “I am dying. RIP legs.”
    • Atlas (either frozen or sore), “I haven’t been able to feel mine all morning”
    • Citgo (who WAS the sadist), “Uncle!”
    • Goonie, who thought the workout was called “I hope I’m not getting shin splints
    • Mario (who did take the Distance award.  9.4 miles ain’t a bad morning), “I’m ready to do again tomorrow”
  • And after late COT that almost didn’t happen, Cobains to any of the PAX that I left off the list this week.  A shell backblast will be posted soon for last week to give you credit…